Algorithms, Vol. 12, Pages 45: A Heuristic Approach for a Real-World Electric Vehicle Routing Problem

Research paper by Mengting Zhao, Yuwei Lu

Indexed on: 25 Feb '19Published on: 20 Feb '19Published in: Algorithms


To develop a non-polluting and sustainable city, urban administrators encourage logistics companies to use electric vehicles instead of conventional (i.e., fuel-based) vehicles for transportation services. However, electric energy-based limitations pose a new challenge in designing reasonable visiting routes that are essential for the daily operations of companies. Therefore, this paper investigates a real-world electric vehicle routing problem (VRP) raised by a logistics company. The problem combines the features of the capacitated VRP, the VRP with time windows, the heterogeneous fleet VRP, the multi-trip VRP, and the electric VRP with charging stations. To solve such a complicated problem, a heuristic approach based on the adaptive large neighborhood search (ALNS) and integer programming is proposed in this paper. Specifically, a charging station adjustment heuristic and a departure time adjustment heuristic are devised to decrease the total operational cost. Furthermore, the best solution obtained by the ALNS is improved by integer programming. Twenty instances generated from real-world data were used to validate the effectiveness of the proposed algorithm. The results demonstrate that using our algorithm can save 7.52% of operational cost.